When Dad went to jail it was the end of our easy life in the village. Mom was isolated completely and the school was a cesspool of gossip. Apparently it wasn't enough for us to loose someone we love and for him to be confined to a cell two hundred miles away, they had to punish us too. They rushed away from us like ocean tide before a tsunami, holding their breath in collective horror and enjoying it more than television at the same time. Everyone except Jimmy, my best friend since pre-K. He told his Mom to stick it and cycled round to my place several times a week. He sat next to me in class and never once mentioned the shit storm he was taking for staying with me. Not one word of complaint, ever.